Squirrel Spirituality

Here’s a timely repost from 2010. -JB

It’s that time of year again.  The leaves are turning colors and the trees are raining down acorns like rogue astroids in our backyard. They’re more plentiful this year than ever before at our home.  I literally need to shovel off the deck every morning to avoid a cartoon-like slip and fall accident.

But the squirrels are in heaven!  Each day I watch them busy gathering an abundant supply of acorns to get them through the long, dark, cold winter months.  I don’t know where they’re hiding them, but they must have a secret treasure trove somewhere nearby.  (In fact, I’m pretty sure they’re lodging somewhere in our basement ceiling considering the piles of acorns I’m finding in the insulation and on the basement floor! But that’s another story.)

But as I reflected on the busy gathering and storing habits of the squirrel, I thought of a spiritual lesson we can learn from the big tailed critters.  Just as the squirrel is wise to hide away acorns to endure the long, cold winter days, so we are taught to hide away God’s Word in our hearts to get us through those cold, dark nights of the soul.  Psalm 119 says, “I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you” (v. 11).

Like a squirrel on a lawn surrounded by acorns, the Psalmist in Psalm 119 stands big-eyed and excited before all the promises found in God’s Holy Book.  All fall I’ve watched the squirrels work tirelessly and endlessly in the work of hunting acorns.  They are consumed with an obsession to gather every last one.  So, too, the Psalmist declares, “My soul is consumed with longing for your laws at all times” (v. 20).  Peter uses a different metaphor, urging Christians to “crave pure spiritual milk” referring to the savoring of “the living and abiding word of God” (1 Peter 2:2-3). Oh, how I desire to be that passionate about God’s eternal Word!

The squirrels munch away at those nuts, apparently enjoying them as much as a newborn infant enjoys momma’s milk just as I enjoy broiled shrimp or BBQ Ribs.  Yet, the Psalmist craves God’s Word more than a hungry squirrel craves acorns: “How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth” (v. 103). “I open my mouth and pant, longing for your commands” (v. 131).

Friends, let us learn a lesson from the eager squirrel. Let us continuously open God’s Word, hunt after His promises, feast on the Truth, and hide away His Word in our hearts, so that we can find sustenance to get us through the long, cold winter days ahead.

Or, in keeping with our theme: Open your Bibles and GO NUTS!

One Comment Add yours

  1. Keri says:

    Love it. Especially the closing line… wonder how long you’ve been planning that one? :)

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